One of the best holidays Val and I ever had was in Montalcino, in the summer of 2000. A wonderful apartment on two floors with views from the rooftop terrace over the southern Tuscan hills, terrific weather, friendly people, good food and great company – Trevor and Joan. Just a nice place to be. And perfect for exploring places like Pienza and Bagno di Vignoli. However, I coudn’t remember anything about the wine, until, that is, I found a diary I’d kept during the visit. Reading it I’m pleased to see we drank some Rosso. Several bottles of the 1995 – ‘excellent’ including what I thought was a very good bottle – called it ‘superb’ costing l.17,000 (about £5). I also noted a bottle of ’93 Banfi Brunello (Brunello is the ‘superior’ Montalcino) at l.23,000. No comment on that one which suggests it was underwhelming. However most of the wine we consumed was cheap generic chianti.
Since then I’ve hardly drunk any Montalcino, because, I think, it is difficult to get a feel for the price/quality equation and I don’t know enough about the wine makers. A bit like Burgundy in other words.
This bottle comes from Majestic, recommended by the staff, about £11 each for two which is just about reasonable (The WS charge £13.50 a bottle). Typical sangiovese nose and taste, well made and ready to drink, savoury, rather thin – in a good way. [Geoff thought it might be Rioja]. But would I buy it again? Probably not.